Mental preparation is the first step in surviving any bad situation and, like any area of preparation, you need to be ready.
No matter how bad the situation is that you find yourself in, you must decide to survive. No matter if you believe that you will survive or that you will not survive, you’re right. The worst thing to do is to curl up in a ball and simply wait for something bad to happen or for it to be over.
You need to develop a mental plan for dealing with a bad situation just as if you were planning to deal with a possible food shortage during a storm. Each possible situation you could find yourself in may require a different plan. A single mental plan is just like a plan for anything else and one plan will not work for every situation.
The first factor in preparing to mentally deal with any bad situation is your own self-awareness. Knowing what’s going on around you plays a key role in your decision making. If you are not paying attention to your surroundings, you will not make a good decision.
Imagine if you were about to cross the street, will you look both ways for oncoming traffic, or would you simply step into the road and hope for the best? You would certainly look for oncoming traffic before crossing so why would you not take the time to consider the things going on around you in every situation?
There are three levels of self-awareness, low, medium and high. If you are in your home or other place where you feel comfortable, you may have a low level of awareness to things going on around you. Low awareness is when we are the most comfortable and when we are the most venerable.
Medium self-awareness is common when we are in a public space that we are familiar with. We should not become so comfortable that we are unaware of the things going on around us. If you do, you’re decreasing your own ability of effectively dealing with a potentially bad situation.
A high level of self-awareness can be generally thought of as if we are traveling in an unfamiliar place or if we are in a situation we have never been in before. If something happens in your home or in a public place, your self-awareness should shift into high gear. It is the fight or flight reflex that will generally take over.
Be aware of your surroundings and consider the possible actions of others. Your self-awareness level and your mental preparedness will help you deal with the situation and minimize harm as much as possible.